Rajnath commissions Navy’s most capable warship INS Visakhapatnam

Rajnath commissions Navy’s most capable warship INS Visakhapatnam

The Indian Navy on Sunday deployed its tenth destroyer at Indian Naval Ship (INS) Visakhapatnam weighing 7,400 tonnes. The ship is the flagship of a new class of four guided missile destroyers built by Mazagon Dock Limited, Mumbai (MDL) under Project 15B.

The next three Project 15B destroyers will join the Navy’s fleet at a span of one year. Their names are INS Mormugao, Imphal and Surat.

The tradition of naming naval destroyers after Indian cities began with Project 15 – which gave birth to INS Delhi in 1997, INS Mysore in 1999 and INS Mumbai in 2001.

This was followed by Project 15A, Prime Minister Narendra Modi commissioning the flagship warship, INS Kolkata, at MDL on 16 August 2014. INS Kolkata was followed by INS Kochi in 2015 and INS Chennai in 2016.

However, even after all four destroyers of Project 15B were commissioned, the Navy would have to operate with only 10 destroyers, as the three older Rajput-class ships, which were purchased from Moscow in the mid-1980s, were on the verge of being abandoned. are on. Removed from service.

In contrast, China’s navy – the People’s Liberation Army (Navy), or PLA(N) – has a fleet of 42 destroyers. These included four massive 13,000-ton Renhai-class cruisers known as the Type 055; 21 modern 7,500-ton Luang III-class destroyers known as Type 052s; six older 7,000-ton Luang II-class destroyers known as Type 052C; and the 051C, 052B, 051B, 052 and eleven older and less capable destroyers of the Soviet-era Sovremenyi-class.

Impressed by the huge numerical advantage of the PLA(N), Defense Minister Rajnath Singh sharply criticized China for destroying “rules-based and stable maritime order” and “freedom of navigation and security of sea lanes”, without naming it. Of.

Upholding the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) as the basis for good order at sea, Singh said: “Some irresponsible nations, for their narrow partisan interests, continue to give new and inappropriate interpretations. These international laws from hegemonic tendencies. These arbitrary interpretations hinder the path of a rule-based maritime order.”

“We envision a rules-based Indo-Pacific, with freedom of navigation, free trade and universal values, in which the interests of all participating countries are protected,” he said.

Appreciating the efforts of the Navy for self-reliance, the Defense Minister said that 39 of the 41 warships and submarines, including the first indigenous aircraft carrier INS Vikrant, are being built at Indian shipyards.

INS Visakhapatnam will be the most powerful warship of the Navy. It is powered by four gas turbines which allow it to travel at over 30 knots (55 kph). The battleship featured stealth features with low radar cross section (RCS), achieved through the efficient shape of the hull, full beam superstructure design, plated masts and the use of radar transparent materials on the exposed deck.

Its weapon and sensor suite is world class, providing protection against enemy aircraft and incoming anti-ship missiles by Indo-Israeli Medium Range Surface-to-Surface Missile (MR-SAM). Provided up to a distance of 70 kms. -Function Surveillance and Threat Alert Radar (MF-STAR).

The destroyer’s ground attack capability and anti-ship capability are achieved through a bank of Indo-Russian BrahMos cruise missiles, which are fired through vertical launch canisters to targets up to 295 km away. The 76mm Main Gun is manufactured at Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited, Haridwar.

Protection against submarines is provided by indigenous rocket launchers, torpedo launchers and Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) helicopters. The ship is equipped with Nuclear, Biological and Chemical (NBC) warfare protection equipment, its entire requirement of air being filtered through NBC filters.

INS Visakhapatnam has achieved 75 per cent indigenization level through indigenous Combat Management System (CMS), rocket and torpedo launchers, and digital control systems such as an Integrated Platform Management System (IPMS), Automatic Power Management System (APMS), foldable hangar . Doors, Halo Traversing System, Close-in Weapon System and Bow Mounted Sonar.

Even the DMR 249A warship-grade steel made from Visakhapatnam is indigenously manufactured by the Steel Authority of India Limited (SAIL).

The ship has a total of about 315 personnel. Its first commanding officer will be Captain Birender Singh Bains.

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